"This is a Christian nation"?
“This is a Christian nation”?
How often have we heard or read these words? It is usually expressed with an air of defiance---sometimes arrogance. What does the expression mean?
Does it mean that everyone in this nation is a Christian? Obviously not. Does it mean that our government is Christian? This cannot be because our country’s controlling document, the Constitution, does not mention Christ or Christianity. Does it mean that our country’s laws are based on “Christian ideals”? This is partly true, but it is not sufficient to call this a Christian nation when the same ideals are found in Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, humanism and other philosophies.
So, what is the intended meaning of “this is a Christian nation”? Could it be that the one who utters these words is trying to give power (essence) to his personal religious preference, Christianity, out of fear that it might be losing its dominence over other religious or non-religious groups? If so, how can a non-believer respond to this without widening the divide? Any suggestions will be appreciated.